Family Home Accommodation

Contact: Dan Marin    mobile: 0040744319708
 It was ten o’clock when we were back seated at Luminiţa’s table and the splendid fare that she had laid out for us. It had been a fantastic day. We went to our beds, but not before a couple of glasses of the plum brandy. The Marin family and the facilities they offer deserved more than the couple of days we gave them. A place to be if you want to be close to the nature, history, culture and the legends of Transylvania.’
(Vintage Bentley Balkan Tour 2009)

Family-run guesthouse in Zarnesti; it was born out of our involvement in wildlife conservation and community development programs with the Carpathian Large Carnivore Project and Piatra Craiului National Park. The house was built up in 1927 by skilled Sachsen craftsmen, and it was at the time one of the most beautiful houses in Zarnesti. The communists confiscated it after the Second World War by simply throwing the owners out in the street at nighttime. The house was then converted into a nursery school. After the Romanian Revolution in 1989 (fall of communist regime), the daughter of the former owner claimed it back; she had to go to court for that, but she eventually managed to get it back. We bought the house from her in 2003 and converted the back part of it into a guesthouse, but preserving the original style of the house.

We don’t only want to offer you a place to stay overnight. We want to let you taste a bit of traditional Transylvanian lifestyle. Each one of the four rooms has a typical local wood-burning stove and decorations (locally-produced table-clothes and rugs, pottery) as well as en-suite facilities. A family travelling together can choose to stay together in one room (max five persons). We have a pretty large garden with fruit trees and a small vegetable plot, playground for children from the times the house was working as a nursery school.

We offer traditional food: dishes that belong to different ethnic groups living in Transylvania-Romanian, Hungarian, Sachsen or Gypsy. You will not only enjoy the taste, smell or aspect of these dishes, but will also learn about the history of them or of specific, local ingredients.

The extraordinary variety of recipes allows us to cope very well with all tastes or dietary recommendations. Part of the vegetables and fruit come directly from our small garden; locals that still practise small-scale, 100% organic type of farming provide us with fresh meat, vegetables, fruit, milk, cheese.

There is free access to our library: books and documentation on a wide range of issues, including the country’s wildlife, traditions, culture, mythology.

‘ Dan’s charming and hospitable wife, Luminita, prepares delicious Romanian, Transylvanian and Rroma dishes, lighter Western-style dishes and caters for special dietary needs. She also gives classes in the art of local cuisine and brews all manner of healing herbal teas’
Lucy Mallows, Bradt Guide for Transylvania

Apart from our day walks and tours, you can choose between different other activities at the guesthouse:

Traditional cooking lessons
Luminita Marin is highly appreciated for her great different skills. One of them is cooking;she combines the recipes that belong to different ethnic groups living in Romania with very interesting information related to ingredients, origins or stories of the various dishes. Her cooking is as it used to be before ‘invasion’ of semi-prepared food; it all starts from the basics, like how to combine ingredients (fresh vegetables with or without meat, spices etc) to get the best taste. The best way to learn all this is by doing it, so you will not only be presented the dish to be cooked but will follow all the different stages by working side by side to Luminita.